Fancourt Montagu

George - Garden Route

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Director of Sports and Recreation: Ryan Reid
Golf director: Bevan du Plessis
Superintendent: Moses Khumalo
Resort Superintendent: Gerhard van Rooyen
Club captain: Dave Mouton
CRITERIA SUMMARY: Total points 80.5 out of 100
Conditioning16.1 / 20
Playability15.5 / 20
Aesthetics12.8 / 15
Design Variety11.9 / 15
Shot Values12.0 / 15
Memorability12.2 / 15

Course Summary

Five tees / Par 72

Protea 6714 metres, CR76.1/145
Springbok 6324 metres, CR74.0/140
Galjoen 5669 metres, CR70.3/134
Yellowwood 5234 metres, CR67.9/127
Blue Crane 4937 metres, CR66.3/120
Galjoen women, CR 76.3/142
Yellowwood women, CR73.8/137
Blue Crane women, CR71.5/132

Visitor green fee

High season, Nov 1 to March 31
Hotel guest R1525 (includes halfway)
Low season, April 1 to Oct 31
R1120; Cart hire R585
No day visitors allowed

Course designer

Gary Player 1992
Redesign by David McLay Kidd 2004
Gary Player 2018


044 804 0030

Previous ranking

5 (2023), 5 (2022) & 8 (2021)

Fancourt is South Africa’s premier resort experience, a major conference centre, and a winner of numerous international awards. The Garden Route region has much to offer golfing visitors, and Golf Digest voted it South Africa’s No 1 golf destination. 

The resort offers guests two magnificent 18-hole courses, the Montagu and Outeniqua, which are ranked in South Africa’s Top 20. Under Covid-19 protocols, both courses are only for the use of members and hotel guests. No day visitors are permitted.

The Montagu is a visual treat from first tee to 18th green, its broad holes framed by attractive vegetation, trees and gardens, set against a backdrop of the Outeniqua mountain range.

The Montagu is the older course, many of its holes being part of a 27-hole facility when Fancourt opened in 1992. A further 9 holes were completed in 1997, when the Montagu and Outeniqua adopted separate identities.

Originally a Gary Player design the Montagu was substantially upgraded and redesigned by Scotsman David McLay Kidd in 2004. He added 430 metres to the total measurement. The work included both a new opening hole, and a new par-5 ninth hole, on different land to the original holes. It’s the only Fancourt course where the two nines return to the clubhouse.

It’s a strong championship course, famed for superb conditioning and fast-paced firm greens. The first nine has some of the most challenging par 4s, the third, sixth and seventh all in excess of 400 metres from the Protea back tees. A feature of the front nine is the river which flows sinuously through the property, arriving in front of the ninth green and departing at the fifth tee, where it enters the main Fancourt storage dam. It’s particularly in play on the sixth and seventh, two of the resort’s most memorable par 4s.

An unusual aspect at Fancourt is there being only one starting tee at the clubhouse, the first of the Outeniqua. The Montagu begins a short distance away, with its own practice putting green next to the first tee.

The Montagu had another upgrade in 2018, overseen by Gary Player, to improve playability and emphasise its traditional parkland look and feel. The bent grass greens were resurfaced, fairway landing areas increased in size, and bunkering reduced. Its water features are more visible. Bushes close to fairways where balls could be lost were removed.

Fancourt has a strong local community caddie programme, and golfers playing the Montagu or Outeniqua can either employ them to carry bags or serve as forecaddies for golfers using carts.


Additional Course Facts

Course Record

Fancourt has no official records, but 63 was scored on the Montagu by Andrew Curlewis in the 2009 Coca-Cola Championship, by Santiago Tarrio Ben in 2020 DiData, and Ugo Coussaud in 2023 DiData.

Feature Holes

Water hazards factor strongly in the finish. The par-3 17th is a signature hole, the tee and green separated by a wide expanse of water. The uphill 18th is the shortest of the par 5s, and again has a green surrounded by water in the front and both sides. The second is possibly the most beautiful par 3 at Fancourt, played from a high tee to a green in the valley below. The seventh is an exceptional long par 4, the fairway curving sharply left around the river to a green that is partly hidden. Uniquely attractive holes on the back nine include the downhill par-5 tenth, and the dogleg left 13th.


Guests staying at Fancourt have a range of luxury accommodation to choose from. There are 113 guest rooms and suites, either in The Manor House (18 suites) or elsewhere on the estate. Its facilities include four restaurants, a spa, gym, hair salon, business centre, four swimming pools, tennis courts, a leisure centre with Kidz Club, cycling, hiking and jogging trails. There is a discount on green fees for hotel guests.

Practice Facility

There is a full-size range with multiple bays close to the clubhouse, with a large short-game area, separate greens for putting and chipping.  A separate practice facility at Bramble Hill, adjoining Fancourt Links, is home to The Academy at Fancourt, managed by Doug Wood and Garth Milne of Wanna Be A Champion Golf & Fitness Academy. The Academy at Fancourt utilises the latest technology. Val Holland is the head coach.

Did You Know

1/ The Fancourt Montagu has been a constant presence among South Africa’s Top 10 courses for more than 20 years, and was ranked No 1 by Golf Digest in 2001.

2/ Each tee marker represents national emblems. The Protea is the national flower, Springbok the national animal, Galjoen the national fish, Yellowwood the national tree, and Blue Crane the national bird.

3/ Pace of play is monitored by marshalls. Golfers are given four hours 30 minutes to complete a round. The halfway house is included in the green fee.

4/ Fancourt regularly hosts Sunshine Tour events, beginning with the Hall of Fame tournament in 1991. The Presidents Cup was at The Links in 2003 and Women’s World Cup in 2005.

5/ Since 2010 the resort has hosted the Dimension Data Pro-Am in February. 156 professionals and 156 amateurs play in betterball teams over all three resort courses.

6/ Fancourt once had four 18-hole courses, one a public facility Bramble Hill. It was closed for residential development and practice facilities.

Club Champions

2024 Dewald de Bruin & Gia Raad
2023 Henk Geldenhuys & Gia Raad
2022 Henk Geldenhuys & Gia Raad
2021 Morris Schiefner & Gaby Gramm
2020 Kyle de Beer & Sonja Bland*
2019 Ben van Wyk & Annelie Swanepoel
*Won 11 club championship titles

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Course Reviews
The Montagu was wet and muddy during the Fancourt Senior Open as there has been plenty rain, so the greens were not as good as normal. I am sure it will improve with warmer weather.
Henry Trevena
03 June 2023
Played in last week's 36-hole Fancourt Senior Open (one round on Montagu and the other on Outeniqua). There has been severely wet and cold weather in George lately, resulting in the most unsatisfactory general condition I have seen the Montagu, which is usually so immaculate.
Greg Woodbridge
31 May 2023
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Montagu is a championship test with little breathing room from first drive to final putt. The course conditioning is excellent and presentation sublime. Significant work has been completed on the bunkers. The sand is pure and refined giving the course a television ready appearance. The signature 17th is currently showing off. The four par 3s are a strength, with a mix of changes in elevation and forced carries over water. The greens complexes are typically well-guarded and challenging to approach. The number of pin placement options is impressive with multiple shelves available to test the elite golfer. The par-5 18th is an iconic finishing hole. The Montagu experience is top notch, with service to match.
Jon James
28 February 2023
Immaculate layout, conditioning and presentation. My favourite course at Fancourt.
Sandor Kovacs
26 December 2022
The Montagu has a characteristic which makes it unique among SA Top 100 courses and possibly also in the world of golf. All four of the par 5s on this championship layout have a water feature adjacent or close to the greens. For elite golfers going for the four greens with long second shots they have water to contend with each time. I haven’t yet found another local course where this happens. Others will have a minimum of one par 5 where water hazards are absent. The fourth is the first par 5 on the Montagu, and a good golf hole. The green is built into the banks of a large lake so any ball right or long is wet. The ninth is where the hazard is furthest from the green, yet here a large area of water must be carried to reach safety on the other side. The tenth, one of my favourites, has water guarding the right side of the hole from 100 plus metres out, and No 18 has a horseshoe ring of water guarding the front and sides of a wide green. So the par 5s really test everyone, from the strongest to the weakest.
Stuart McLean
10 May 2022
Fancourt never disappoints and the team always ensures a memorable experience. The greens, bunkers and overall presentation were excellent. The Montagu is a tough challenge from any tee, forcing you to show respect and manage your way around the course. Recent improvements are taking shape and over time will influence shot options even further.
Lihan van der Merwe
05 May 2022
I was concerned about spending a few days at Fancourt soon after their epic floods in late November, but those fears proved unfounded. Ryan Reid and the Fancourt team deserve medals for the incredible work done to get the estate and golf courses back in sparkling condition within a couple of days. The only signs of the torrential rain were muddy patches on some fairways, and sand washed out of bunkers. Montagu's par-5 18th is one of the great risk-reward finishing holes in the Western Cape. The green is within reach of a brave second shot after a good drive. But the water around the green punished me twice for an inferior strike. A small niggle about Fancourt is the relatively short practice range and having to hit balls off mats.
Hamish Houston
13 January 2022
Montagu is one of the best layouts in South Africa and a true test for any level of golfer. Some newly planted trees, especially those on No 10, will impact on future shot options which will add to the playing experience and require further course management. After the recent floods the course was back in magnificent condition with minimal signs of damage. The greens are excellent, firm and running fast.
Lihan van der Merwe
03 December 2021
The Montagu is in fine condition, the greens, fairways and overall presentation top notch. It is a stern test with a number of forced carries and penalty areas in play off the tee and with approach shots. The par-5 fourth is a brute into the breeze and requires a brave shot into a green guarded by water. And the green itself provides interesting challenges when putting. A favourite stretch is from No 6 to 9, two challenging par 4s followed by a superb par 3 and long par 5. The back nine includes two tremendous finishing holes in the signature par-3 17th and par-5 18th. Montagu is championship ready and would provide a great spectacle for a future tournament. It must be a contender for a Top 5 ranking.
Jon James
30 November 2021
The Montagu has evolved into one of our most challenging championship courses. The word among Fancourt members is that it's now tougher to play than The Links, and I wouldn't disagree. One strong hole follows another. Nowhere do you get a breather. It would be great to see it become the next venue for the SA Open which hasn't visited the Cape since 2009. What a showpiece it would look on European Tour TV coverage. Stunning views of the Malgas River have been opened up on the 13th and 14th holes, which border its steep banks, making this a more scenically attractive part of the layout. It's exciting to hear of a new set of tees possibly being built at 14 on the opposite bank of the river!
Stuart McLean
26 October 2021
Montagu is well maintained with great attention to detail. Greens consistent and quick, fairways have good coverage (no need to place), bunkers consistent. However, players don’t refill divots or repair pitch marks .
Henry Trevena
13 June 2021
Played the course in December and have played Fancourt every year for the last 10 years. Since the greens were re-done they are disappointing to say the least.
B ginsberg
12 February 2021

Fantastic layout, but what I don't like is how much it is orientated towards a cart course. I walked the course with a trolley and found the cart path an irritation, and long walks between holes.

Jamie Thom
15 January 2021
Great course. Always a pleasure to play.
Anton Bezuidenhout
23 October 2020
Montagu is in the best condition of any course I have played this winter. Testament to the leadership of Fancourt Director of Sports and Recreation Ryan Reid and his team. Montagu sets the benchmark for other courses and is always in great condition.
David Frost
10 September 2020
My personal No 1 in the country. Layout, aesthetics, memorability and whatever other rating criteria you wanna throw in comes out tops. Greens magnificent and run at championship pace. Nothing to fault on this world-class course. Attention to detail everywhere you look.
Sandor Kovacs
21 April 2020
Fortunate to play ahead of the Fancourt club championship field. The best conditioned course I have played anywhere in the world. Greens hard and fast, but held well on mid-iron approaches. Massive kudos to Ryan Reid and his team to bounce back from the December-January drought.
David Frost
28 March 2020
The starting hole might be surprisingly far from the clubhouse, yet its generously wide fairway makes it a comforting sight for that opening tee shot. The Montagu offers a lot of room off the tee; it's the approach shots to greens that are often difficult. The four par 3s here are fabulous holes.
Stuart McLean
21 February 2020
Clearly one of our top courses. Great layout, testing every club in the bag, and condition always superb.
Ivan Palframan
19 February 2020
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